The Man Who Invented Christmas

2017

Biography / Comedy / Drama

61
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 80%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 82%
IMDb Rating 7 10 5213

Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Downloaded 370,165 times
February 26, 2018 at 03:32 AM

Director

Cast

Dan Stevens as Charles Dickens
Christopher Plummer as Ebenezer Scrooge
Jonathan Pryce as John Dickens
Miriam Margolyes as Mrs. Fisk
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU 720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
972.99 MB
1280*534
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 5 / 72
1.75 GB
1920*800
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 8 / 50
967.45 MB
1280*538
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 5 / 71
1.75 GB
1904*800
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 2 / 49

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by David Ferguson 6 / 10

one of the best humbugs

Greetings again from the darkness. Most would agree there is only one Christmas story that surpasses the popularity and familiarity of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol", and both have had numerous film and screen adaptations. Rather than offer up yet another film version of the Dickens novella, director Bharat Nalluri (MISS PETTIGREW LIVES FOR A DAY, 2008) instead uses the Susan Coyne screenplay adapted from the non-fiction work of Les Standiford to present the lively and entertaining tale of HOW Dickens wrote his iconic book.

Dan Stevens (BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, 2017) stars as the esteemed writer Charles Dickens, and he bounds from scene to scene like a moody and spoiled Energizer Bunny. Attempts to capture the process behind creative writing usually falls into one of two buckets: dry and boring, or outlandish and over-the-top. Mr. Stevens easily fits into the latter, but as a testament to the strength of the story and supporting cast, we viewers are nonetheless quite entertained.

It should surprise no one that Christopher Plummer steals each of his scenes as Ebenezer Scrooge. What a delight to behold the talented octogenarian as he leaves us wishing for even more of the grumpy and miserly old former partner of Jacob Marley. Jonathan Pryce also excels as Charles' father John, a charming man who has never quite figured out the economics of life … and whose long ago debt sent young Charles to a work house mixing shoe black. Even as an adult, Charles had recurring nightmares of his time in child labor, and fortunately he was able to use those memories to create many long-lasting stories, each oblivious to generational change.

In 1843 London, the renowned Dickens is coming off three straight flops and experiencing financial woes that are exacerbated by his insistence on the finest materials for the large home he and wife Kate (Morfydd Clark, LOVE & FRIENDSHIP) are renovating. Dickens is in the midst of severe writer's block, and only the quiet strength of his wife and never-wavering loyalty of friend/agent John Forster (Justin Edwards) are able to keep in from sinking to even lower emotional depths. Screen veteran Miriam Margolyes plays the housekeeper, and Anna Murphy is Tara, the Irish nanny who serves as a muse for Dickens.

Having the characters of the story appear on screen and interact with the writer is a terrific way to explain how the creative mind works, although at times, the sources of ideas, characters and key lines seem a bit too convenient. We often get the feeling that perhaps too much was crammed into the run time, what with the conflicts over money, renovations, family matters, and publishing. The best parts are also the easiest with which to relate – those involving the characters and the story slowly coming together.

Simon Callow plays John Leech, the famed illustrator of the finished novella, and Miles Jupp adds a bit of twisted fun as Dickens' rival William Makepeace Thackery. There are some interesting lines that add color, such as, "People will believe anything if you are properly dressed", and "blood of iron, heart of ice". It's these pieces that allow us to view this as a journey of self-discovery for the author, and not just a famous story being assembled. The overall trouble with the film stems from that title. It seems we could have expected more than a tease of what Christmas was at the time, and more specifically how "A Christmas Carol" inspired a revolutionary new approach to the holiday. We are left to connect many dots. In fact, Dickens didn't so much invent Christmas as allow folks to re- imagine it.

Is "A Christmas Carol" the most famous Dickens story? Arguments could also be made for "Oliver Twist", "David Copperfield", "Little Dorrit", "Nicholas Nickelby", and of course, "A Tale of Two Cities". What can't be argued is the brilliance of the writer and the impact of his books. His passion is evident in his determination to self- publish at a time when such practice was a rare as it is commonplace today. The film is rated PG, but younger kids are likely to be confused with the frenetic approach; however, all ages will get a merry kick out of Mr. Plummer's Scrooge!

Reviewed by gwmbkm 10 / 10

Dan Stevens and Christopher Plummer head wonderful cast

When Dan Stevens asked that Matthew, his "Downton Abbey" character, be "killed off" so he could pursue other acting opportunities, I thought his career would go directly downhill. Matthew Crawley was a pleasant young man - but really didn't give Stevens much meat to chew so I figured his career would go the unsuccessful way of many other actors of limited talent who left successful TV parts. However, he was right to leave. He is much more talented than Matthew Crawley allowed him to be. His versatility is showcased to perfection as Charles Dickens in THE MAN WHO INVENTED Christmas.

It doesn't hurt that his Dickens is surrounded by a charming group of eccentrics, some of whom exist in his 19th century reality and others of whom exist only in his fertile imagination. I particularly liked Anna Murphy's Tara, the Irish housemaid who presents Dickens with inspiration for several key elements in his "A Christmas Carol." Ms. Murphy's career should advance as she has a quite likable screen persona and an ability to stand out in any scene.

Christopher Plummer is wonderful in every part in which he plays. What woman wouldn't want to heal the heart of his Captain Von Trappe (THE SOUND OF MUSIC)? Who wouldn't want to hear his Chang declaim Shakespeare in its original Klingon(STAR TREK VI)? And who couldn't be caught up in the soul of Hal in his Academy Award winning BEGINNERS? I saw him in his stage presentation of BARRYMORE and was mesmerized. His Scrooge is equally mesmerizing.

The script is tight, the acting is solid, the sets, costumes, and staging are perfectly 1843. This movie should become a true Christmas classic - just as "A Christmas Carol" itself is a classic. In short - I loved it!

Reviewed by rgkarim 8 / 10

Joy To The Characters/World, Humbug To The Emotion

The definition of the modern Christmas we celebrate can be traced to legendary author Charles Dickens who made the timeless classic A Christmas Carol. Such an epic story is stemmed in the spirit of giving, hope, and redemption, a symbol that we aspire to hit and often not succeed. Where did the inspiration come from though? How did he get the ideas? I don't know, but the movie I'm reviewing tonight attempts to answer that question in an entertaining manner. Robbie K here sharing his opinions on The Man Who Invented Christmas starring Dan Stevens and Christopher Plummer.

LIKES:

The World: If you read my reviews, you know I'm a big fan of world building and settings. The Man Who Invented Christmas recreates the nostalgic world of 19th century London and all the class that once inhabited the world. Seeing the society of the times reemerge from the London fog brought a homey feeling to me, invoking the beginnings of the Christmas season in a world that once treated as a minor holiday. The attention to detail is astonishing, primarily in all the chaotic organization that was Dickens' life, primarily the study to where he pondered all his works. It is this factor that will pull you into the movie as the stage continues to unfold.

Clever Presentation: When attempting to answer how Charles got his motivation and do it in an entertaining manner, the team has to think outside the box for this one. The Man Who Invented Christmas managed to do this quite well in most manners, primarily in rendering his thoughts as personified beings, capable of interacting with him. His conversations with the characters is a creative representation of the stresses of his mind and how they influence the progression of the story. And very much like a scene out of Slum Dog Millionaire, the movie was able to also bring his supposed history into the mix to also motivate moments of the book. Much of it was predictable, but it was a nice homage to his life that filled in the gaps I had forgotten.

The Acting: By far the best element for me though is the acting held in this movie. The secondary characters do their part in serving as obstacles, motivations, and support for Dickens himself, especially his best friend and his father. Yet, the main piece to watch are the characters of Scrooge and Dickens himself. Christopher Plummer still has life within his older bones, playing the pompous Englishman to the letter. He captured all the quips, jabs, and sarcasm of the character and managed to get that bitter attitude toward life. Yet, Plummer also got the humorous part of the role down pat, almost like a rival/mentor showing tough love to accomplish the task. As for Stevens, his portrayal of the talented writer with the obsession for perfection was fantastic. Stevens managed to take the dual role of Charles Dickens and personify the internal struggle that was his life as he pursued his muse of an epic story. All the anger, frustration, and joy were quite balanced in this movie, hooking me into his life and keeping me in my seat until the final sequence faded to black.

DISLIKES:

Scene Placement: The movie does a nice job filling in the gaps, but at times I didn't enjoy the placement of the scenes. Mainly the flashback scenes, much of Dickens' past was scattered through this movie, dropped at odd moments that offset the momentum of the sequence. Some of these moments could have been better delivered at earlier moments, and may have minimized the confusion of why he was so angry. Not sure whose direction it was to place things in this order, but it didn't work for me at times.

Background Characters: As you watch his story progress, you get to see new characters emerge as his world starts to motivate him to write. Yet unlike Scrooge, with whom he constantly interacts with, many of the other characters are just background bodies who smile, laugh, and kind of look odd. Sure, I understand the personification of what they mean during his writer's block and how they were connected to his central character, but why did they remain constantly in the background? I don't have those answers, but it was kind of odd having them randomly walking around with him and doing little past that. Sorry guys, not a fan of limited use characters.

The diluted emotion: I expected the movie about the guy who revolutionized Christmas to be a little more emotionally charged. Sadly, this film didn't quite pack the holiday joy and magic that his tale was able to elicit long ago when I watched the Muppet version long ago. While inspirational, I didn't get overwhelmed with feelings that made me embrace the holiday season. I felt this was due to some of the movie magic being left out of the movie, giving it that realistic twist, but unfortunately drying up the specialness those hokey, overdramatic effects bring to the table. This tale would have benefited from a page in the Hallmark channel book in terms of motivating you to inherit the spirit of Christmas.

The VERDICT:

The Man Who Invented Christmas is an immersive film that uses setting, presentation, and incredible acting to bring the 19th century to life. Despite all the cool insights into Dickens' life though, this movie lacks cinematic magic, logical use of characters, and pacing that is important in films. This movie could have done well on a television release, or streaming movie rather than a theater presentation. It does hold potential for a church outing, but this reviewer recommends holding out until it comes to home viewing.

My scores are:

Biography/Comedy/Drama: 8.0 Movie Overall: 7.0

Read more IMDb reviews

14 Comments

Be the first to leave a comment